I could hear the ocean waves crashing against the rocks as I pulled up to the guard house of my family’s estate. The guard manning the gate was the same one who’d been there for years, and he waved me through without any ceremony. Jackson was hiding in the trunk and had jumped out as soon as we were out of immediate sight of the guard house.
I followed the cobbled road that led up to the immense castle that had been in my family for hundred of years. The imposing stone facade looked as if it had been carved right out of the mountains behind it. I was willing to reduce it to pebbles if necessary to get Nyla back.
As I climbed the steps to the massive front door it swung open. It was one of my father’s men. I could tell by his foul odor that he had been in my apartment less than two days ago. I was on him in a heartbeat.
“You thought you could just take my woman and not pay a price?” I said as I threw him to the floor.
“I...I was following my master’s orders Prince Zander.” He gasped. But I never stopped my assault. “And those orders just got you killed.” I said as I snapped his neck. I was on my feet again ready to run the gauntlet.
As I stepped over the remains of my father’s guard and entered the house, I immediately spotted several members of his court leaning out of various rooms to see what the commotion was about. But it was clear they didn’t want to get involved, so they simply bowed their heads to me out of respect. Good choice. I wasn’t there to kill everyone. Only the ones who were involved in taking Nyla from me. My phone vibrated with a text letting me know that Jackson had Nyla in his sights. I headed towards the northern part of the castle, and my father’s private quarters. And that’s when they struck.
The rest of my father’s men who were involved in taking what did not belong to them had formed a column across a bridge that connected the main half of the castle to the family quarters. My father’s first mistake was using such young vampires to do his dirty work. I tore through them with a single mindedness that was it’s own overwhelming force. When I was done, the body parts and blood that covered the ground created a macabre mosaic that most humans would find shocking. But I was only getting started.
With my hands still dripping blood, I reached my father’s room and froze at what I saw in front of me. A large cage sat in the corner of his bedroom. It was nothing more than a glorified dog crate. A snarl crawled up my throat and erupted as I practically flew across the room to get to her.
“Not so fast my son.” My father’s voice called out from behind me. Motherfucker.
“What the fuck have you done?” I didn’t bother to turn around. My eyes were on Nyla who appeared to be unconscious.
“I warned you that she was unsuitable to be a queen. Killing my men will not change that. I have more men.” He said.
I could sense Jackson’s presence and sent him a telepathic message while my father congratulated himself.
“Where are you?”
“On the balcony. The lock on the cage will detonate and kill her without the proper code. I’m working on it. Keep him talking.” His thoughts kept my focus centered on my father.
I turned to face my father and maintain my position between him and that fucking cage.
“She is more suitable than any of the others you paraded before me. She’s human, a virgin, and a moon child born in the month of July. What else is there?” I asked.
“Well for one thing, she has no supernatural connection at any point in her bloodline as far as I can tell which is very important. And, well... there is the matter of her color.”
“Her what? Are you like some sort of vampire racist now? Are you telling me you’ve done all of this because she’s black?”
“Think of me what you will, but she will not marry into this family.”
I stepped toward my father who was arguably one of the most powerful vampires in existence. “I hate it when you underestimate me father.” My fangs dropped and the coldness I’d felt as I destroyed the men out in the hall turned positively Arctic. I heard the cage rattle behind me but resisted the urge to turn around. I knew that Jackson had cloaked himself and that my father would not be able to see him as he worked to unprogram the lock and set Nyla free.
“You’ve put me in an extremely difficult situation. But for me there was never a choice.”
My father simply smiled in response and then everything exploded.